04 July 2009


It's 7:30 PM Mountain time. I've just wrapped up my Denver itinerary and plan on starting my return drive to California early morning.

I enjoyed my weekend, even though actual time spent in the Denver area doesn't add up to much, due to the excessive travel times. I tried to enjoy the drive itself - 1,000 miles one way - as much as Denver, and that worked out very well.

My sightseeing took me to Rocky Mountain National Park, home to the highest continuous highway in the US (12,100 feet above sea level). While Denver was warm, it was downright chilly at those lofty altitudes, so extreme that even trees couldn't grow up there. The thin air also meant that breathing took a bit more effort, and that my car lost a lot of power, especially going uphill. Nevertheless, glad to have seen the unique scenery there.

Within Denver, I visited the annual Cherry Creek Arts Festival, the Capitol Hill district, LoDo (Lower Downtown, revitalized older city core, including Larimer Square and the 16th Street pedestrian mall), and Denver Botanical Garden. While Denver is a pleasant city in its own right, it's tame compared to cities on the West Coast, in the Northeast, and Chicagoland. Denver's strongest point is its easy access to the beauty of the Rockies, though as it is the largest city within at least 500 miles, it does serve as the area's cultural magnet.

I don't expect to come back to Denver just to see the city itself, but will certainly come back for a night or two, probably on the way to places farther east.

No photos as I am completely knocked out. I also have San Francisco photos to upload. Will take care of that over the next several days.